Vice President Kamala Harris met with Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei on Monday (June 7) before delivering a warning to migrants thinking about entering the US. “Do not come. Do not come,” Harris said.
Harris met with leaders to discuss their cooperation with easing the surge of migrants entering the United States since President Joe Biden took office in January. Thousands of unaccompanied minors entered the country, creating a crisis for the Biden administration, and the people directly impacted by policy changes. Vice President Harris was tasked with leading efforts to address the needs of people at the border.
“I want to emphasize that the goal of our work is to help Guatemalans find hope at home,” Harris said. “At the same time, I want to be clear to folks in this region who are thinking about making that dangerous trek to the United States-Mexico border: Do not come, do not come.”
Harris’ remark was met with backlash from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who described it as “disappointing.”
“This is disappointing to see,” Rep. Ocasio-Cortez wrote in a tweet. “First, seeking asylum at any US border is a 100% legal method of arrival. Second, the US spent decades contributing to regime change and destabilization in Latin America. We can’t help set someone’s house on fire and then blame them for fleeing,” she added.
The Biden administration announced they would be establishing a task force to address corruption, human trafficking and drug smuggling in the region. New initiatives to boost education and economic opportunities were also unveiled by Harris.
The VP traveled to Mexico on Tuesday (June 8) to meet with President Andrés Manuel López Obrador.
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